Voiding the Warranty

Often people come to my Orange County massage therapy office because they did something that seemed like a good idea at the time, but it just didn’t “work out.”

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For example…

The info-commercial for ab workouts showed a very buff looking man doing oblique crunches on a tilted bench. Head tilted down. Seemingly effortlessly he did about 10 oblique crunches while a narrator said, “Get the body you have always wanted in just 10 minutes a day.…”

Well, people who can do oblique crunches upside down – Olympic gymnasts and professional fitness models doing infomercials – don’t need the machine. When the rest of us try that to get rid of our love handles we are mostly likely to pull the muscle until it screams.

Pulling an oblique muscle – an abdominal muscle that runs diagonally between the rib cage and the hip – creates a lot of pain and stiffness.

It is debilitating in that we use this muscle to pick up things, turn over in bed, pick up a child seat, reach for a file, etc. This muscle tends to feel painful from the rib cage down into the crotch area and quickly sends people to the doctor thinking something else must be terribly wrong.

In massages I use gentle, soothing strokes to calm down the inflammation and tension in the oblique. Some massage is intended to stimulate other muscles to support the oblique while it heals. I also massage the low back and hips to release stiffness and balance the two sides.

- Sue Peterson

 
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National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork

National Certification Board for
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Certification Number: CMT #1039